If there is a 2020 baseball season, the first time we might hear an ump shout 'play ball' will be July

sportsgold 100x100By Pepper Parr

April 8th, 2020



A 101 year tradition is about to take a hit – the Inter County Baseball League is going to have to basically cancel their season.

Many of the communities that have a ball team have closed their ball parks.

Baycats player sports

The Barrie Baycats have been the IBL league leader for the past few years

The COVID-19 has had an incredible impact on every aspect of society and sports is no exception and after a century of continuous operation, The IBL and all its teams are resigned to the fact that a traditional IBL season in 2020 is not possible.

Several of the municipalities where The IBL has teams have already stated that those ball parks will be off limits until at least Canada Day.

The IBL is still hopeful that the pandemic is brought under control in the coming months and that some sort of modified IBL season is possible.

Batter IBL August

The crack of the bat as it meets the ball may not be heard this season.

What that season might look like is pure conjecture at this point. We do know there is no hope for a full season and playoffs like The IBL and its fans have experienced for 101 straight summers. We also know that some teams have already made the tough decision that they will not be playing this year.

All teams, including those that are still holding out hope for some baseball this year, realize that the prospects of a season of any kind seems unlikely and would only move forward with the full blessing of the province, medical officers of health and our municipalities. We realize a lot of good things would have to happen for us to have some baseball this year including the absolute safety of our players, umpires, volunteers and fans.

This is consistent with Baseball Ontario’s current direction and hope for a season in 2020.

At this point, The IBL can say in confidence that we will not have baseball of any kind before July 1; that the majority of teams, while realizing IBL baseball this summer may seem unlikely, are hopeful of playing a modified season; and that some teams have already resigned themselves that they will not operate in 2020.

Finally, to our fans, players, umpires, sponsors, volunteers and all the people past and present who have a relationship with The IBL – stay in, stay healthy, stay safe and hopefully, we see you all at the ball park as soon as this is over and it is safe to do so.

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